The Third and Final Adventure of the Rampart Worlds.
The adventure concludes . . .
Forced by overpopulation to emigrate from their own star cluster, the powerful alien race called the Haluk intend to seize control of desirable planets in the Milky Way belonging to the Commonwealth of Human Worlds . . . and the secret of their scheme is human greed.
Two centuries into the future, the Hundred Concerns, powerful corporations that dominate galactic commerce, have pressured the Commonwealth into signing a pact with the Haluk, who controls a vast supply of the rare elements vital to starship operation. Among the few people who recognise the malevolent intent of the aliens is Helly Frost, hotheaded maverick son of a family of interstellar entrepreneurs, who dedicated his life to exposing the misdeeds of the Hundred Concerns until he was framed and disgraced.
Now Helly's reputation has been restored, after a series of wild adventures that made him a media celebrity and a nemesis of outlaw Big Business. He and a small group of associates are close to proving that the Haluk have created demiclones - genetically engineered individuals who are perfect human replicas - in order to infiltrate the perfidious Concerns and even human government itself.
Helly travels to the Sagittarius Whorl, a fearsome region of the galaxy inimical to life, to gather what he hopes will be the crucial pieces of evidence that will expose the Haluk plot and its venal Concern collaborators. Instead, he discovers that a demiclone impersonating him is to play a key role in humanity's subjugation to the aliens.
While he watches helplessly, transformed into a hideous, blueskinned facsimile of a Haluk . . .